There’s a real stink in the UK at the moment about the actions of George Lawlor. He’s a student at Warwick University. This establishment, along with many other universities, invites freshers to ‘consent awareness’ workshops. I think some of them actually make these workshops compulsory, but in Warwick’s case they’re voluntary.
George got the hump, and I have to say I’m on his side here. He felt it was insulting to him, to the people who raised him, and his previous education to imply that he didn’t already know that rape was wrong. He felt the workshop would be nothing more than a lot of very earnest speakers addressing a lot of headnodders. I tend to agree with him.
Then the shit really hit the fan. He photographed himself holding a sign stating ‘This is not what a rapist looks like.’ He was absolutely correct; it’s not. He’s not a rapist, so a photograph of himself is not a photograph of a rapist. What he was doing was a clever take on the ‘This is what a feminist looks like’ tee shirts that were all the rage among our politicians in the run-up to the election.
The PC brigade rounded on him, claiming that he was stating no white middle class males are rapists. He emphatically did not do that. He stated that he wasn’t, not that no white males were. As a result, he’s been sworn at, assaulted, forced to leave a bar, and has encountered so much hostility he has suspended himself from lectures.
This is a serious subject, because levels of sexual violence against women (and men for that matter) in seats of learning are way too high. However I doubt that any people with a bent towards such activity are going to be swayed by a workshop that has worthy intentions but no hope at all of changing attitudes or behaviour.
I note that the workshops are meant to extol the virtues of ‘safe space’ for all, but as usual what you get is a safe space only if you’re in agreement. George dissented, and has had his safe space comprehensively destroyed.
On a slightly different topic, I see some idiots in the US have developed lockable antirape underwear for women. What a great idea. Put the onus on women to protect themselves rather than on men not to attempt to rape them. Who are those lamebrains in the US?